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Economic News Release

Commissioner's Statement on the Employment Situation News Release

Advance copies of this statement are made available to the press 
under lock-up conditions with the explicit understanding that 
the data are embargoed until 8:30 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time.

                              Statement of

                           William J. Wiatrowski
                            Acting Commissioner
                       Bureau of Labor Statistics

                       Friday, September 7, 2018

      Nonfarm payroll employment rose by 201,000 in August, and 
the unemployment rate held at 3.9 percent. Employment increased 
in professional and business services, health care, wholesale 
trade, transportation and warehousing, and mining. 
      Incorporating revisions for June and July, which decreased 
nonfarm payroll employment by 50,000, monthly job gains have 
averaged 185,000 over the past 3 months.
      Employment in professional and business services increased 
by 53,000 in August. Over the year, the industry has added 
519,000 jobs.
      In August, health care added 33,000 jobs. Job gains 
occurred in ambulatory health care services (+21,000) and 
hospitals (+8,000). Health care employment has grown by 301,000 
over the year. 
      Employment in wholesale trade rose by 22,000 over the month 
and by 99,000 over the year. Durable goods wholesalers added 
14,000 jobs over the month and accounted for about two-thirds of 
the over-the-year gain in wholesale trade. 
      Transportation and warehousing added 20,000 jobs in August. 
Over the year, employment in transportation and warehousing has 
increased by 173,000, with about one-third of the gain occurring 
among couriers and messengers. 
      Mining employment increased by 6,000 in August, after 
changing little in July. Since a recent low point in October 
2016, mining has added 104,000 jobs, almost entirely in support 
activities for mining.
      Employment in construction continued to trend up in August 
(+23,000) and has increased by 297,000 over the year.
      In August, employment in manufacturing changed little 
(-3,000). Over the year, employment in manufacturing was up by 
254,000, with more than three-fourths of the gain in the durable 
goods component.

      Employment in other major industries--retail trade, 
information, financial activities, leisure and hospitality, and 
government--showed little change in August. 
      Average hourly earnings of all employees on private nonfarm 
payrolls rose by 10 cents in August to $27.16. Over the past 12 
months, average hourly earnings have increased by 2.9 percent.  
From July 2017 to July 2018, the Consumer Price Index for All 
Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased by 2.9 percent (on a 
seasonally adjusted basis).
      Turning to data from our survey of households, the 
unemployment rate remained at 3.9 percent in August, and the 
number of unemployed people, at 6.2 million, was little changed.
      Among the unemployed in August, 1.3 million had been 
searching for work for 27 weeks or longer. These long-term 
unemployed accounted for 21.5 percent of the total unemployed.
      The labor force participation rate, at 62.7 percent, and 
the employment-population ratio, at 60.3 percent, both declined 
by 0.2 percentage point in August. 
      Among the employed, the number of people working part time 
for economic reasons, also referred to as involuntary part-time 
workers, was little changed in August at 4.4 million but was 
down by 830,000 over the year. 
      Among those neither working nor looking for work in August, 
1.4 million were considered marginally attached to the labor 
force, little different from a year earlier. Discouraged 
workers, a subset of the marginally attached who believed that 
no jobs were available for them, numbered 434,000 in August, 
also little different from a year earlier. (People who are 
marginally attached to the labor force had not looked for work 
in the 4 weeks prior to the survey but wanted a job, were 
available for work, and had looked for a job within the last 12 
      In summary, nonfarm payroll employment increased by 201,000 
in August, and the unemployment rate held at 3.9 percent.

Last Modified Date: September 07, 2018